LINSANITY : Not Even A Multimillion Dollar NBA Contract Or A Feature Film Can Change Jeremy Lin

Story by Ada Tseng.

In 2012, basketball star Jeremy Lin lived the ultimate underdog story. As the then-23-year-old rose from obscurity — one minute, he was worried his short-lived NBA career was over, the next minute, he was on the cover of Sports Illustrated with the headline “Against All Odds” — Lin became more than an international sports hero. He embodied the hardworking Asian American icon that had been discriminated against and underestimated his entire life and was finally getting his opportunity to show the world what he could really do.

While his February 2012 streak caught everyone (including Lin himself) off guard, no one could have been more excited than the film team led by director Evan Jackson Leong, who happened to be shooting a documentary about Lin at the time. Leong had started production on the film back when Lin was a senior at Harvard university. Lin remembers, “I figured, worst case, we’d have someone compile all this footage and make a cool story, and maybe I’ll be able to show it to my kids and my grandkids one day.”

As January 2012 rolled around, Leong was ready to wrap up Lin’s story, but the only thing he was missing was a good ending. Lin not only gave them their ending, he elevated the stakes of the film more than any of them could ever imagine. What was envisioned as a low-key series of webisodes about one of the few Asian Americans in the NBA suddenly included footage of sports journalists bombarding Kobe Bryant with questions about Lin, David Letterman donning a Jeremy Lin jersey on the Late Show, and even President Obama claiming he knew about Lin way back when he was playing at Harvard. Narrated by actor Daniel Dae Kim, Linsanity: The Jeremy Lin Story screened at the Sundance Festival, had a theatrical release in October, and will be out on DVD January 4.

After the whirlwind that was Linsanity whisked Lin from the New York Knicks to the Houston Rockets in July 2012, the attention started to die down. A year later, the 25-year-old has, for the most part, remained out of the headlines, but in Taiwan, the homeland of Lin’s parents, the obsession continues. Giant Linsanity billboards can be seen all over Taipei, and as Linsanity producer Bryan Yang says in a new NBA video about Jeremy Lin fandom in Taiwan: “Linsanity as a phenomenon has not subsided. It’s as if it were February 2012 still. … It’s the Beatles, except modern-day in Taiwan.”

Each summer, Lin travels to Taiwan to teach at a youth basketball camp, as well as to share his testimony of the past year. At 2013’s “Dream Big, Be Yourself” youth conference in Taipei, he confessed that he temporarily lost control of his identity with the unexpected onslaught of fame.

“I talked a lot about the pressures of Linsanity and being caught up in who everyone else wanted me to be,” says Lin. “I addressed three main issues that draw people away from God — money, worldly success and human approval — and how I started to put my identity in basketball. I started to be consumed by the whole Linsanity thing.”

On what helps him keep his head on straight, he says, “I think it’s just constant reminders, going back to the Gospel message and understanding that it doesn’t matter how well I play or what I do on the court; at the end of the day, I’m still a sinner before God, and that’s all that really matters. I need His grace, His love, His forgiveness, and it’s about being diligent, spending time with God every single day and having that support network to keep you accountable.”

But that doesn’t mean Lin doesn’t have time to have fun. On his down time, he and his family and friends collaborate on comedy videos on his YouTube channel, which boasts videos with up to 4.7 million views and have featured everyone from popular YouTube stars KevJumba and Ryan Higa to basketball colleagues Steve Nash and James Harden.

“People can take three minutes and watch a funny video, and it’ll help them laugh and relax, but hopefully every video has a specific message behind it, too,” says Lin. For example, one of his latest videos, “You’ve Changed, Bro,” which spoofs the idea that Lin has let fame go to his head, ends with a passage from Romans 12:2a: “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”

And on being considered a new Asian American sex symbol? The 6- foot-2-inch athlete, who has been quoted saying that his perfect girl would be “a faithful Christian” and have “a desire to serve other people [and] help with the underprivileged,” remains modest.

“I appreciate that people see me in that way, but it’s kind of something that I brush to the side,” he says. “I don’t think that’s ever been one of my goals or one of my focuses, but I’m still thankful that they see me in whatever light that they see me in.”

This story was originally published in our Winter 2013-14 issue. Get your copy here

Full Length Trailer for Live-Action “Kiki’s Delivery Service” Disappoints Viewers

When it was announced that Japan was creating a live-action version of Hayao Miyazaki’s beloved classic, Kiki’s Delivery Service, it seemed as if the world could hardly wait.

This news was especially exciting for dedicated Miyazaki fans who were saddened by Miyazaki’s news of retirement. Although the  film director, animator, manga artist, producer, and screenwriter would no longer create brilliant works, fans took comfort that his legacy could live on through this live-action film.

Unfortunately, this excitement quickly dropped with the release of the film’s teaser trailer a few months ago. Although the teaser gathered well over 1 million views, this number does not accurately explain fan reactions to it. The teaser had over 400 likes, but it also gained over 2,300 dislikes. Clearly, the public had no problem expressing their opinion.

Some complained about the special effects while others claimed there was no way it could accurately portray the magic of Miyazaki’s work. Some even broke out into arguments about the 1985 novel by  Eiko Kadono which inspired Miyazaki’s work in the first place.

Whatever your opinion of the trailer was, there was simply no denying that fans seemed unsatisfied.

Recently, the first full length trailer of the live-action film made its way to the internet. This time, the trailer is a minute a five seconds. Although this may seem short for a full length trailer, this is still longer than the 40 second teaser released earlier.

This trailer reveals more of the island which Kiki appears to live on, the bakery she works in, a boy we suspect is Tombo, and more shots of Kiki flying on her broom.

The full length trailer is only a couple of days old, but it has already gained nearly 600,000 views on YouTube. Unfortunately, the dislikes almost double the likes. Once again, some ghibli fans do not appear to be pleased while others argue that it’s a “must see.”

Watch it below for yourself and tell us what you think.

 

Tao Okamoto’s Hollywood Debut in “The Wolverine”

Story by Taylor Weik.

She’s walked on more runways than she can count, has had an issue of Japanese Vogue dedicated to her and her bowl haircut inspired fashion designer Phillip Lim to imitate the style on the whole cast of his fall/winter 2009 show. To say that Tao Okamoto has made achievements in the fashion world is an understatement. Now, the Japanese supermodel, who has won honors such as “Model of the Year” from the Japan Fashion Editor’s Club and one of Japanese Vogue’s “Women of the Year,” has moved on to the entertainment industry to tackle another profession: acting.

Okamoto made her Hollywood acting debut in this summer’s Marvel blockbuster The Wolverine, costarring alongside the Wolverine himself, Hugh Jackman. Directed by 3:10 to Yuma’s James Mangold, the X-Men sequel, which is set to be released in Digital HD  November 19 and released on DVD and Blu-ray December 3, follows the hero to Japan for the first time since World War II where he encounters a new set of mutants and villains. While in Japan, he meets and falls for Okamoto’s Mariko Yashida, the granddaughter of Wolverine’s old friend whom he saved during the war.

It’s no coincidence that Okamoto’s first film has her costarring with Jackman. “My Japanese agent told me about the audition and I almost refused; I’ve never acted,” Okamoto recalls. “But then when I was told that the role would be Hugh Jackman’s love interest, I said yes right away!”

Okamoto has always cited Jackman as one of her celebrity crushes, so when she received the news that she had landed the role of Mariko while in her New York apartment, “I was so happy and honored, then I was worried. I didn’t know what to expect from my first acting role.”

But the model had a large support system. Okamoto had reassuring talks with Mangold and Jackman became a mentor to her as soon as the two met. In between takes and while on set, Jackman would give her helpful acting tips he’d learned over the years. She even got to work with Rila Fukushima, another model-turned-actress that Okamoto had known for 10 years in the fashion world but never had the chance to get to know.

 

More than anything, Okamoto found that acting wasn’t so different from modeling. “The reason why I love modeling is because I love transforming myself. I enjoy dressing up as someone else and immersing myself. Acting allows me to do that even more because now I can use my voice and movements to immerse myself even more in the role.”

Is she going to pursue acting full-time? Maybe, but not now. Okamoto plans to continue balancing her runway shows with scene-rehearsing. In the future, she hopes to act in serious dramas or musicals (yes, she can sing, too). She’s graced the pages of magazines like Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue as a model already; maybe next time, she’ll be one of the featured actresses.

 

Flashback Friday | Ten Indian Leading Ladies You Should Know

2013 marks 100 years of Indian cinema — home of the unique film genre affectionately referred to as Bollywood — and through the century, there have been many memorable leading ladies, from Nargis, Sridevi and Rekha to Madhuri Dixit, Aishwarya Rai, Rani Mukherjee, Preity Zinta and many many more.

This year,  Audrey Magazine highlights some of our favorite Indian actresses ruling contemporary Hindi cinema today.

Here are 10 names to know:

Priyanka Chopra

When the former Miss World (2000) began her career in Bollywood, from her 2002 debut in the Tamil film Thamizhan to her damsel-in-distress role to Hrithik Roshan’s superhero in 2006′s Kriish, there was often more talk about her skimpy outfits than her acting skills. Then 2008 happened: Chopra had six films come out that year, and while the first few were unsuccessful, late 2008 brought the release of Fashion, the first role that got critics talking about her talent rather than her looks — especially when she swept all the major Indian Film Awards that year for Best Actress. Since then, even if the film she’s been in haven’t been acclaimed, people tend to point out Priyanka Chopra’s performance as the best part. Case in point: the awards she’d picked up for playing a murderess in 7 Khoon Maaf and an autistic woman in Barfi! in the last two years.

Films to watch:
Fashion
Kaminey

 

Vidya Balan

Vidya Balan has been acting in feature films for a decade, but she broke out into stardom recently with her role in The Dirty Picture, the biopic about the adult film actress Silk Smitha who was popular in the 1980s and 90s. The role earned her Filmfare and National Film Awards for Best Actress in 2012, and she followed it up with the crime thriller Kahaani, in which she plays a pregnant woman in search of her missing husband.

Films to watch:
Kahaani
The Dirty Picture

 

Kajol

Kajol (also pictured at the top of the article) has been a household name since 1995′s Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ), which kickstarted a filmgoing craze (it is the longest running Indian film in history, and as of Jan 2013, the film is still playing in a theater in Mumbai, 17 years later) as well as a timeless romantic pairing (Kajol and Shah Rukh Khan have acted in six films together). But in recent years, Kajol has brought an even greater depth to her performances. Just check her out as the blind woman in Fanaa or the grieving mother in My Name is Khan. You’ll feel like a really beautiful, soulful woman just punched you in the stomach.

Films to watch:
DDLJ
Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
Fanaa
My Name is Khan

Deepika Padukone

Deepika Padukone made her debut in 2007′s Om Shanti Om, playing two characters that looked identical though they’re from different time periods (it can happen, just go with it). But she gave both characters enough nuance to prove to audiences that she was more than a tall, strikingly-beautiful model — even though she was definitely tall and definitely strikingly beautiful. Since then, she’s taken on different types of characters, from the modern-day romantic lead in Love Aaj Kal to the downward-spiraling toxic friend in Cocktail.

Films to watch:
Om Shanti Om
Love Aaj Kal

 

Anushka Sharma

Another actress who got her start in a Shah Rukh Khan film (2008′s Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi), Anushka Sharma soon ventured out on her own and found another leading man that she seemed to have good chemistry with, on and off screen. Acting opposite co-star Ranveer Singh (quick tangent: check out his abs in Audrey’s Daily SHAG here) in Band Baaja Baaraat and Ladies Vs. Ricky Bahl, Sharma really showcased her natural charisma and ability to lead a film. In 2012, she reunited with Shah Rukh Khan in Jab Tak Hai Jaan. Whereas in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, she played the mourning, subdued wife whose life and belief in love needed to be re-ignited by Shah Rukh Khan’s charm, in Jab Tak Hai Jaan, she was the mini-Shah Rukh Khan, who “Shah Rukh Khan”-ed Shah Rukh Khan himself. I know it sounds confusing. But just watch the movies.

Films to watch:
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
Baand Baaja Baaraat
Jab Tak Hai Jaan

 

Katrina Kaif

Born in Hong Kong to a Kashmiri Indian father and an English mother, Katrina Kaif often seems to have a maturity beyond her years onscreen. By 25, she was playing the Chief Minister party leader in the political thriller Raajneeti — and somehow pulling it off. After memorable turns as a civil rights activist circa 9/11 in New York and a diving instructor helping Hrithik Roshan get over his fear of water (and workaholism) in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, she helped jaded modern audiences believe in “old school” true love again in last year’s blockbuster Yash Raj film Jab Tak Hai Jaan.

Films to watch:
Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara
Raajneeti
Jab Tak Hai Jaan

Farah Khan

Farah Khan has been in the industry for what seems like forever: as a choreographer, she is responsible for so many memorable Bollywood dance sequences that it’s almost impossible to count, but some of our favorites include “Chaiya Chiaya,” “Shava Shava,” and “Maahi Ve.” In addition to her choreography, she’s directed memorable films such as Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om. In 2012, she won a Stardust Best Actress Award for her on-screen debut Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi. But even when she’s behind the camera, she is an incomparable leading lady.

Films to Watch:
Om Shanti Om (as director)
Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi

 

Sonam Kapoor

Sonam Kapoor (daughter of Anil Kapoor, who international audiences know from Slumdog Millionaire and TV’s 24) made her debut in 2007 with Saawariya, opposite Ranbir Kapoor. At the time, Saawariya got a lot of attention, because although the two of them were newcomers to the industry, the film was co-produced by Sony Pictures, and it was the first Bollywood movie to receive a North American release by a Hollywood studio. Since then, Kapoor has landed girl next door roles in romantic comedies, such as Aisha and I Hate Luv Storys.

Films to Watch:
Saawariya
Aisha

 

Kareena Kapoor

A descendant of the legendary Kapoor family, Kareena Kapoor is continuing the legacy started by Prithviraj Kapoor and cemented by Raj Kapoor, as Kareena was most recently named the highest ranking female actress in Forbe India’s Celebrity 100 list. A power player in the industry, Kapoor has been one of India’s highest paid actress in years, starring in blockbusters including Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots, Salman Khan’s Bodyguard, Shah Rukh Khan’s Ra.One, and most recently reuniting with Aamir Khan in Talaash: The Answer Lies Within. 

Films to Watch:
3 Idiots
Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu

 

There are many more, but here are 10 to start with. Who are your favorite Indian actresses?


 

 

Flashback Friday | Ten Taiwanese Leading Ladies You Should Know

Ang Lee has done more than anyone to bring attention to the Taiwanese film industry, shooting much of his 3D fantasy film Life of Pi in Taipei and Taichung — and always making sure to thank Taiwan in those Oscar speeches, even if his film is about gay cowboys in Wyoming. But Taiwan’s local films have had a recent commercial resurgence as well, catapulted by 2008′s super hit Cape No. 7. More recently, successful films include You Are The Apple of My Eye, Monga, and Seediq Bale, in addition to Taiwan/China co-productions like the ensemble romantic comedy Love. At the same time, Taiwanese dramas are as rampant as ever — and all of this brings us a wealth of new Taiwanese leading ladies.

A comprehensive list that spans decades would definitely include Taiwanese talents such as Sylvia Chang, Brigitte Lin, Lu Yi-Ching, Mavis Fan, Barbie Hsu, Rene Liu, Vivian Hsu and more, but instead, we’re going to concentrate on young actresses ruling commercial Taiwanese film and television today.

Michelle Chen 
As the honor student who all five male friends have a crush on in 2011′s hit film You Are The Apple of My Eye, Michelle Chen is the girl next door with that extra sparkle in her smile, should she respect you enough to shine it your way. The film was a commercial hit in Taiwan and the all-time highest grossing Taiwanese film in the Hong Kong box office, and it propelled Chen into stardom, earning her Best Actress nominations for Taipei’s Golden Horse Awards and Asian Film Awards.

Watch:
You Are The Apple of My Eye
Hear Me

 

 

Sandrine Pinna

The half-Taiwanese, half-French actress first started getting noticed in the international festival scene as the muse of director Cheng Yu-Chieh, who cast her in his 2006 film Do Over. In 2009, he wrote Yang Yang – about a Eurasian girl dealing with her identity as a newbie in the entertainment industry — with Pinna in mind. The well-regarded actress has a magnetic quality onscreen, simultaneously child-like and soulful, and she was most recently nominated for Best Actress at the Golden Horse Awards for her work in Touch of the Light, where she plays an aspiring dancer who befriends a blind pianist.

Watch:
Yang Yang
Touch of the Light
Endless Love (TV)

 

 

Shu Qi

Often compared to Angelina Jolie for her sultry lips and smoldering effect onscreen, Shu Qi is most admired for her roles in Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Millenium Mambo and Three Times, for which she won the Golden Horse Award for Best Actress in 2005. She also had a short stint in Hollywood acting, opposite Jason Statham in the original French action film The Transporter (co-directed by Hong Kong action director and choreographer Corey Yuen). In the last five years, she’s earned box office appeal in China with her romantic comedy If You Are The One 1 and 2, but most recently, she was part of the ensemble cast for the 2012 film Love, the Taiwanese version of Love Actually.

Watch:
Millenium Mambo
Three Times
If You Are The One

 

Alice Ke

Alice Ke has a habit of popping up on many successful Taiwanese movies and dramas — from the tarnished hooker with the heart of gold in Monga, to the goal-oriented yet sometimes hapless department store worker in Office Girls, to the smokey-eyed unstable girl who thinks a teddy bear is her boyfriend in Bear It. And somehow Ke makes each wildly different character both likable and multidimensional. Her most recent drama was 2012′s Gung Hay Fat Choy (Wo Men Fa Cai Le).

Watch:
Monga
Bear It
Office Girls (TV)

 

 

Ariel Lin

Ariel Lin first shot to fame in 2005 with It Started With a Kiss. Based on a manga series, Lin plays Xiangqin, the struggling, yet optimistic student who first annoys her crush, the emotionally-challenged genius Zhi Shu, with her haplessness and borderline stalking, but later wins him over out of sheer will power. Seven years later, Lin has grown up and is less “adorable” but more self-reliant in In Time With You, playing the sophisticated but stubborn manager who can’t admit she loves her best friend. The role earned Lin her second Golden Bell Award for Best Leading Actress in a Television Series.

Watch:
It Started With a Kiss (TV)
In Time With You (TV)

 

 

Amber Kuo

Amber Kuo is a Taiwanese Mandopop singer who gained attention as an actress in 2010, with roles in Arvin Chen’s Au Revoir Taipei (where she took home Best New Actress at the Taipei Film Festival) and the TV drama The Year of Happiness and Love (for which she was nominated for Best Leading Actress in a Television Series at the Golden Bell awards). In Doze Niu’s ensemble romantic comedy Love, she gives a memorable performance as a girl betrayed by an indiscretion between her boyfriend and her best friend.

Watch:
Au Revoir Taipei
Love

 

Ivy Chen

2009 was a big year for Ivy Chen, as she played a daughter of the Triad boss in the Golden Bell Award-winning cop series Black & White and gave a memorable turn as the protagonist in Hear Me, a film predominantly told in sign language, for which she won the Best Actress award at the Taipei Film Festival. In 2012, she was in the romantic comedy Love — co-starring actresses Amber Kuo and Shu Qi – playing a young girl who makes a detrimental mistake that might cost her her relationship with her best friend.

Watch:
Hear Me
Love

 

 

Sonia Sui

Sonia Sui’s claim to fame is The Fierce Wife, which was labeled “the most talked about show in Taiwan” in 2011 and was so popular that it was re-aired in Japan later that year and was adapted into a feature film The Fierce Wife: The Final Episode in 2012. Sui plays a young mother whose husband cheats on her with her cousin. Much of the comedy — and tragedy — comes from the ensuing divorce and her attempt to move on, and Sui’s performance has been praised for her balance of strength and fragility.

Watch:
The Fierce Wife

 

 

Rainie Yang

The quintessential Taiwanese idol drama actress, Rainie Yang has been acting and singing since her debut role in 2001′s Meteor Garden. Though prolific, she’s had to work to be taken seriously as an actress, earning respect with her role in 2007′s Spider Lilies, a Zero Chou-directed lesbian drama that won the Teddy Award for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival. She’s often paired with Mike He, and she recently starred opposite Joseph Chang in Drunken to Love You.

Watch:
Spider Lilies
Hi My Sweetheart (TV)
Devil Beside You (TV)

 

 

Gwei Lun-Mei

Although she got her start in the 2002 film Blue Gate Crossing, Gwen Lun-Mei may be most known for her role opposite Jay Chou in his directorial debut Secret. Gwei earned critical recognition this past year with her performance in Yang Ya-che’s Girlfriend Boyfriend, alongside Joseph Chang and Rhydian Vaughan, and she was the most recent recipient of the Best Actress trophy at the Golden Horse Awards.

Watch:
Secret
Blue Gate Crossing

 

 

Who are your favorite Taiwanese actresses?

The Princess and the Physician: Review of Diana

Story by Ada Tseng.

Naomi Watts and Naveen Andrews star in Diana, released November 8, a biopic about a secret love affair that the Princess of Wales had with a British Pakistani heart surgeon before her untimely death in 1997.

The 2013 film Diana, directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel and based on Kate Snell’s 2001 book Diana: Her Last Love, begins with the camera following Diana into different rooms and down corridors of the exquisitely-decorated palace where she lived alone after her separation from Prince Charles. Because we don’t see her face, there’s not only a sense of mystery but also a foreboding feeling, especially in a moment when she stops abruptly to look to see if anyone’s following her and we’re not sure why.

It’s a fitting beginning for a real-life inspired film in which we already know the tragic ending: the paparazzi chase that ended in a 1997 car crash that killed both Diana and her rumored lover, Dodi Fayed. While it was the biggest media story of the time, most assumed that Fayed was the only man in the picture, and it wasn’t until later that it was revealed that Fayed may have been more of a fling. That the man she was actually in love with was Dr. Hasnat Khan, a British Pakistani heart surgeon that she had secretly been dating for two years until they broke up in June 1997. She passed away in August.

The story of a secret love between a doctor who fiercely valued his privacy (Khan has still refused to talk about their relationship publicly, over 15 years later) and one of the most famous women in the world is the subject of this film, which takes place in the last few years of Diana’s tumultuous life.

di 2

Diana plays a little bit like an earnest teenage romance, for better or worse. The moments of sneaking around inspire the giddiness akin to sneaking out of your bedroom at night to meet your high school crush. She dons a long brunette wig so she can go out in public without being recognized, her cover story for seeing Khan at the hospital is that she is there visiting patients in need, and at some point she climbs over a back fence avoid paparazzi at Khan’s front door and tears her pantyhose. They share quotes from literature with each other; to his surprise, she knows one from the Quran that she learned as she was doing research for one of her previous diplomacy trips.  There’s even a moment where she screams his name from the street outside his place, hoping he’ll stick his head out of his two-story window.

 

Symbols, while appreciated, are displayed wrapped in adorable bows. The heart surgeon believes that you can die of a broken heart. The princess haunted by dreams of falling (being dropped or flying, defined differently depending on her feelings about love at the time), wonders if anyone will be able to catch her. And Khan’s love for jazz music, which Diana is excited to explore, ultimately represents the importance of improvisation outside of the princess’ otherwise structured life.

 

di 3

 

Overall, Naomi Watts successfully captures familiar mannerisms of the Princess of Wales, and Naveen Andrews (Lost, The English Patient) is as dashing as ever, as the dapper physician who quickly captures her attention at the hospital. It’s easy to see why she’s taken by the serious-minded, career-focused man who is generally very contained except in the fleeting moments when he dares to dream that they can meld their completely-opposite lives.

But Diana shines most in the moments when the film dabbles (albeit lightly) into the complexities of their relationship. The princess visits Pakistan to seek Khan’s Muslim skeptical family’s approval, and while she eventually wins them over (the princess can win anyone over), it’s not so simple. He cannot marry her without marrying the entire world. At one point, while his family member doubts Khan will be able to continue to practice normally as a surgeon if he marries her and tells him he has to choose, he jokes that Khan marrying Diana would be great for Pakistan! The doctor might love her, but is that enough? The fact that we might never know is what makes this story of star-crossed lovers perfect fodder for a dramatized Hollywood movie.

Diana opened on November 1 and is playing worldwide. For more information, go to the film’s official website.

 This story was originally published on asiapacificarts.usc.edu

Chinese Theater Accidentally Uses Fan-Made THOR Poster

A movie theater in China may have just made the best mistake ever.

The theater put up a poster of Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and his villainous brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) to promote the new Marvel film Thor: The Dark World. The mistake? Last we checked, we’ve never seen the brothers embrace like that.

Much to the delight of fans (many of whom had hoped for something like this) the Chinese theater had accidentally used a photoshopped image made by a fan. The original poster is one showing Thor clutching his girlfriend Jane who is played by Natalie Portman. We simply can’t decide which one we like better.

On the bright side, the mistake has gone viral and has done quite a spectacular job marketing the film. Be sure to catch the midnight premiere of this much anticipated film tonight!

poster

orig poster

 

Released Today: Naveen Andrews in “DIANA”

The award winning, South Asian actor Naveen Andrews stars in the much-awaited motion picture Diana which is released in US theaters today. 

Two-time Oscar nominee Naomi Watts portrays Princess Diana. With a brilliant cast, the film takes a deep look into the secret love affair between Princess Diana and South Asian heart surgeon, Dr. Hasnat Khan.

Although the Princess of Wales is an iconic and well-known figure, her passionate love affair with Pakistani heart surgeon Dr. Hasnat Khan remains an untold story. Director Oliver Hirschbiegel aims to change that with this romantic and compelling film.

“Hirschbiegel directs from a screenplay by award-winning playwright Stephen Jeffreys, inspired by the book Diana: Her Last Love by Kate Snell, which was in turn drawn from extensive interviews with close friends and confidantes. The result is a window into the tumultuous, change-filled period from 1995-1997, in the wake of Diana’s shattering divorce from Prince Charles, and at the moment when she stood on the cusp of a different life, evolving into a global humanitarian, a master of maneuvering fame and becoming her own woman.”

 

Release Date: November 1

Director: Oliver Hirschbiegel

Distributor: eOne Films

Official Site: http://OfficialDianaMovie.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OfficialDianaMovie

 

diana 3

diana 1 diana 2

 

Photo Credit: Naomi Watts stars as “Diana, Princess of Wales” and Naveen Andrews stars as “Dr. Hasnat Khan” in the upcoming release of Entertainment One’s DIANA. © 2013 Entertainment One Films US

Top 5 Ways James Wan Has Mastered Scary Films

Don’t know who James Wan is? Well you certainly ought to change that.

Responsible for films such as Insidious, The Conjuring, and the Saw franchise, James Wan has been shaping our nightmares for years now. The 36-year-old Chinese Australian filmmaker is overlooked far more than he should be. Many people know his films and yet they don’t know the man behind them.

At the young age of 11, Wan was already well-aware that he wanted to be a filmmaker. After he received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne, he instantly went on to make films with a fellow aspiring filmmaker, Leigh Whannell. The two have collaborated with one another for a handful of films which just so happen to be perfect for Halloween.

We encourage you to sit down with some popcorn, a protective blanket, and a James Wan film of your choice.

Still don’t understand why Wan is an Audrey favorite? Check out the Top 5 Ways James Wan Has Mastered Scary Films:

[Warning: Spoiler Alerts]

 

1. He understands that given the right setting, a doll can be our worst nightmare.
No seriously, these things are creepy.

doll 1 doll 2
doll 3

2. He understands the power of Audio.

Watch a James Wan film at the theaters and you surely won’t be disappointed with the audio. Many scenes use it very tactfully like this one from Insidious:

And lets not forget the way he manages to make a simple title score terrifying as it’s blasted at you at full volume:

 

 

3. Why yes, things popping up at us unexpectedly is frightening. 

pop 1 pop 2 pop 3

4. He understands that sometimes “less is more.”

Don’t get me wrong. Wan is brilliant at scary images that stay in your head in the worst way possible, but he understands that there needs to be variety.

the counjuring

He can take a little girl pointing at a wall and horrify you. He can allude to a scary flashback without ever showing what happened, but still give you the creeps. Wan understands that sometimes, our own imagination can be much worse than anything he shows.

5. He makes you care about his characters and his storyline.

saw

You may have turned away from the stomach-churning gore in Saw, but you have to admit, the movie got you thinking. He made sure you paid attention and ended up questioning whether or not you would be able to do the same thing. Would you make the same mistakes?

Conjuring-family

Often times, a flaw within horror films is that we simple don’t care about the characters. We’re afraid for death itself, but we don’t actually know too much about the characters who are about to die. Wan very tastefully avoids this mistake. He makes you actually like his characters. You end up hoping for a happy ending and it very successfully makes you more invested in the film.

So take it from us and make sure Wan is part of your holiday today. Happy Halloween!

 

Catch Booboo Stewart and Fan Bingbing In The New “X-Men: Days of Future Past” Trailer

There are many reasons to be excited about Marvel’s X-Men: Days of Future Past which hits theaters on May 23, 2014.

For one, there’s time travel. We get to see Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart as Magneto and Professor X – the roles they played in the earlier “X-Men” movies  AND we get to see Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy, the actors who played the younger versions of  Magneto and Professor X in the 2011 prequel, “X-Men: First Class.”

Secondly, this Marvel film puts together a star-studded cast including Hugh Jackman, Jennifer Lawrence, Ellen Page and Halle Berry.

And of course, we’re more than excited to see Eurasian actor Booboo Stewart and Chinese actress Fan Bingbing bring life to their much-anticipated characters.

 

warpath 2 warpath

Booboo Stewart plays Warpath, a mutant who posses superhuman speed and strength.

blink

Screen Shot 2013-10-29 at 12.59.20 PM

Fan Bingbing plays Blink, a mutant with the ability to teleport.

Fans have been anticipating the portrayal of these new characters and we’re sure these two actors will do them justice. Catch them both in the new trailer below: